Disasters

Everything That Went Wrong With The Love Canal Mass Poisoning Case

Love Canal in New York state is now a Superfund site, but, back in the 1950s, it was an idyllic community full of post-war-boom houses and schools. Unfortunately, two of those schools – and an entire neighborhood full of family homes – were built on top of Love Canal, a buried body of water turned toxic waste dump. The Love Canal disaster came to a head in the late 1970s, when parents became alarmed at the rate of birth defects in their children. That, combined with a disturbing odor permeating the air, led to the realization of the Love Canal tragedy – residents were surrounded by dangerous chemicals, some of which were carcinogens. The federal government, led by Jimmy Carter, bought out the existing houses, closed down the schools, and began to clean up the area, or at least contain the toxins and keep them from spreading. Unfortunately, what happened at Love Canal occurred throughout the world in different forms, including at Chernobyl, site of a nuclear reactor meltdown. 

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